Annual Report 2007
Year 2007 has been an exciting stepping-stone for the Future Worlds Center. It was a year of transformation, expansion and success. The Future Worlds Center became more international and managed to enlarge operations at national, European and international levels.
Our Vision to “operate at the interface of science & society” by using technology to promote social justice, development and peace has become both clearer and more tangible in all our projects and activities.
The New Media Unit launched a number of research projects and social initiatives. The islandwide safer Internet campaign, “CyberEthics”, engaged schools, media and local authorities. A Hotline was created together with CYTA to receive and investigate reports of illegal or annoying content on the Internet. Our participation in “EU Kids online” gave us the possibility to play a role within Europe in the area of research that concerns the safer use of the Internet. A number of other projects focus on the integration of broadband technologies in education, examine the effectiveness of animations and visualizations in learning and aim to develop new e-learning web tools.
The Social Justice and Humanitarian Affairs Unit continued to provide services to asylum seekers and refugees and operated the Unit for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture. Our foresight, almost 3 years ago, to expand in the area of International Development set the stage for international projects in the field of Development Education. We secured two grants that place Future Worlds Center not only in a pioneering position within Cyprus (being the first NGO to launch Development Education projects), but also within Europe.
Our vision is for the introspective Cypriot society to evolve into a community of people that look towards the future of the planet with confidence and responsibility. We aspire to see Cyprus looking beyond its own political horizon and local problems, pioneering in international development programs hence fulfilling its geopolitical destiny to serve as a crossroad amd melting pot of civilizations.
I invite you to read our 2007 Annual Report and come back to us with suggestions and ideas. This short introduction could not cover all our projects, which are described in more detail in the following pages. We are proud to have you as a friend as an affiliate and as a supporter, and we look forward to strengthening our relations, communication and collaboration within our network and with our many and new partners.
This report was prepared in December 2007 and was approved during the regular Board meeting for the end of the year, which has taken place on December 28 at the Future Worlds Center offices in Nicosia.
Board of Directors
Name Position Dr. Yiannis Laouris Permanent Board Member President Dr. Joulietta Kalli Laouri Board Member (until 31/12/07)
Dr. Nikleia Eteokleous Ex-officio Board Member Secretary (until 31/12/07) Prof. Harry Anastasiou Board Member Dr. Aleco Christakis Board Member (as of 1/1/08) George Tziapouras Board Member Xenia Constantinou Board Member &Secretary (until 31/12/07) Romina Laouri Board Member Elia Petridou Board Member & Secretary (until 31/12/07) Kerstin Wittig Secretary (as of 1/1/08)
Nearchos Tsangaris CAT, Authorised Accountant Active Management Thermopylon 73 Emmar - Andria Court 2007 Acropolis, Nicosia Tel 22427327 Fax 22515125 Email email@example.com
Kikis Makrides, Legal Advisor K. Maklaw Management Secretarial Services Ltd. P.O. Box 22463 1522 Nicosia Tel 22 313680 Fax 22 313903
C.N.T.I. was founded through the initiatives of Dr. Yiannis Laouris and a team of repatriated Cypriot scientists with the support of ex-Minister of Education and Culture Dr. Chrysostomos Sophianos, ex-School Inspector Dr. Christodoulos Laouris, the Bishop of Paphos Chrysostomos and three prominent foreign academics Prof. Dr. Sc. Med. Peter Scwhartze (Germany), Prof. Dr. Med. Habil. Uwe Windhorst (Germany/Canada), and Regents Prof. Biol. Douglas Stuart (USA). It was registered on the 6th of November 1991 and launched its activities in 1993. Between 1994-1999 it expanded its aims beyond research and Cyprus by hosting a number of peace and international development projects. It was re-structured in year 2000 modifying its original Constitution to embrace those projects aiming in the development of an active civil society in Cyprus, as well as projects with international scope, especially those that involve the application of technology towards bridging the literacy, economic and digital divides (Development and IT Education). Towards the end of 2005 it evolved into a larger organization with a pure international orientation integrating all its activities under one umbrella.
Aims as in Constitution
a) Designing and execution of studies and research programs with future orientation in areas related to the human brain and learning, technology and social change, global society, conflict transformation and global peace.”
b) Development of new models of education based on recent advances in cognitive science and computing.
c) World-wide operations focused on international development, cooperation, humanitarian support, justice, transparency and advocacy of human rights, especially the right of education and the enhancement of inter-ethnic and international peace.
d) Organization of scientific, technical and cultural events or programs in issues relevant to the aims of the organization.
e) Organize, conduct and supervise seminars, congresses, conferences, workshops; deliver courses; offer educational and/or information services in the above sectors with the aim of sensitization, enlightenment or training of the modern active citizens.
f) Collaboration with universities, other institutions, organizations, and individual active citizens in Cyprus and abroad to promote the aims of the organization.
g) Serve as provider of information and consultant in academic, commercial, scientific and technical subjects.
h) Discovery, research, study, encouragement, support and promotion of new innovative ideas and methods, techniques, scientific technological, electronic systems and generally intellectual property.
i) Promotion of research in Cyprus and abroad in collaboration with other organizations, public or private, local or international for the achievement of our aims.
j) Promote Cyprus as a supporter of Development & IT education, scientific research and peace in the three continents around her, thus contributing towards consolidation of peace and prosperity in the wider geopolitical region.
k) Publication of material in subjects relevant with the aims of Institute
Unit for Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture http://www.urvt.org
The Unit for Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture is a project funded by the European Refugee Fund and the Republic of Cyprus, through the Asylum Service - Ministry of the Interior. The project has been initiated in 2006 and has since been funded consecutively. The Unit supports and promotes the empowerment and rehabilitation of torture victims with a focus on refugees and asylum seekers. URVT’s mission is to assist victims of torture by providing multidisciplinarytreatment and rehabilitation services and also to raise public awareness of issues concerning torture and rehabilitation. URVT’s integrated treatment approach ecompasses a full range of services including medical treatment, psychological support, legal counselling, and other social services. The Unit works closely with a network of volunteer service providers, medical professionals, and language and cultural translators to help victims of torture and their families rebuild their lives. The Unit is the only of its kind in Cyprus and its personnel has been trained accordingly in Greece by MCRT. Results of the action: The Project being now in the second year of its operation has rehabilitated more than 30 individuals, some of whom are still being supported and some have received asylum on the grounds of humanitarian principles. The Unit has also done substantial work in the field of raising public awareness within society.
E u r o p e a n s meet in Caucasus http://alldifferentallequal.info/node/537
The project was a contact making seminar (CMS) that brought together youth organizations from five program countries and EU member states (Austria, Cyprus, Greece, Latvia and Poland) with youth NGOs from five non-program countries in Eastern Europe and the Caucasus (Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine). During the contact making seminar the participants succeeded to exchange contacts, expertise and visions and managed to identify common aims, needs, concerns and interests of the 11 different partner organizations. At the CMS more than 30 ideas for joint projects between participating organizations were developed. Some of the projects have already secured funding and more than five follow-up projects started a few monts after the seminar.
SafenetCY -Island - wideSafer Internet Hotline in Cyprus http://220.127.116.11/cyethics2/page.php?pageID=15
SafenetCY is the hotline that promotes the safe use of Internet in Cyprus. It serves the needs of all people that live on the island (i.e. also Turkish Cypriots and other minorities) and addresses not only issues of pornography, but also racism (currently on the rise in Cyprus), gender discrimination and inappropriate use of people’s images. It operates as a combined Awareness Node and a Hotline under the CyberEthics project. The project engages actors from the government and the civil society, thus contributing towards the eradication of cyber crime through informed actions of European citizens and public institutions that aim to change behaviors, mentality and attitudes, giving special emphasis to rural and less developed areas of the country. The Hotline handles reports made through its corresponding website. In line with Cyprus legislation on the anonymity of the reporter, the Hotline operator takes all necessary actions in order to deal with the reported issue independently of who has filed the complaint. Every report is recorded on SafeNetCY’s Database. From that point every procedure has to be completed in less than 24 hours from the time the report was made.
The CyberEthics project is co-funded by the European Commission. CyberEthics, the Cyprus Awareness Node has implemented in 2007 a very successful Safer Internet campaign. The collaboration of all its partners, Microsoft, CYTA and others in connection with the creative use of its “Cyber” and “Ethics” characters and its new safer internet computer game have been very effective in promoting awareness to the Cyprus public, island-wide. The three Cyprus-made TV spots together with some European ones have been broadcasted hundreds of times through multiple TV channels. The website has undergone major face lifting and significant expansion in content. Different sections for children, youth, parents and educators make it easy to access a wealth of materials. The Hotline section has been integrated and is liked easily from all pages. The Family Planning Association, the Olive Branch Foundation, the University of Cyprus, CYTA, the Cyber Crime Unit of the Police and the Ministry of Education have all been engaged in concert in numerous presentations to respective target groups. The project aims to: 1. operate an island-wide hotline for Internet users in Cyprus to report illegal and harmful material and activities, so as to reduce the circulation of illegal content on the Internet. 2. inform users of the hotline’s scope of activity and how to contact it; 3. make clear to users the difference between their activities and those of public authorities, and inform them of the existence of alternative ways of reporting illegal content. 4. deal rapidly with complaints received, in accordance with best practice guidelines drawn up by the network and in cooperation with law enforcement authorities. 5. exchange specific information on identified illegal content with other members in the network. 6. Participate actively in networking nationally and at European level and contribute to cross-border discussions and exchange of best practice. 7. cooperate with the awareness node present in the country and Europe Direct. 8. take an active part in events organized for the Safer Internet day at European, national and local level. 9. develop a structured method of concertation with the relevant actors (e.g. Internet Industry Association, major communication service providers, media regulators, legal authorities) in cooperation with other safer Internet nodes in the country, if any.
Everybody’s Song - Music as a tool for the promotion of diversity and intercultural understanding http://www.everybodyssong.net
The general aim of the project is to reflect on the role of music in intercultural understanding and to identify ways in which to utilize it in youth work. The participating countries were Bulgaria, Cyprus, FYR Macedonia, Greece and Serbia. Objectives include: to raise awareness about cultural diversity; to train youth organizations and musicians in intercultural learning; to establish partnerships between youth NGOs and artists; to attract new target groups to youth work and the arts; to facilitate cross border cooperation between five different countries; to increase the visibility of the Youth in Action program in South East Europe.
Peaceful Europe http://www.peacefuleurope.info
The Peaceful Europe Project was implemented in collaboration between Future Worlds Center (Cyprus), Human Rights and Education Network (Cyprus), Comune di Senigallia (Italy), Comune di Ostra (Italy) and Centrum Vol’NehoCasu (Slovakia). The purpose of the project was to design, develop, and implement tools and activities, which cultivate peace and non-violence. The project activities included awareness activities, a research and a series opf workshops targeting teenagers aiming to explore the concepts of Peace Education, Intercultural Learning and Cultural Diversity in the context of Europe.
SteLLLa is a partnership of 7 European partners from Belgium, Cyprus, Germany, Italy, Poland, Slovenia and Spain, supported by the EU Lifelong Learning Program (LLP) and subprogram GRUNDTVIG. The name SteLLLa is the short form of the longer name “Stimulation of eLearning for Life Long Learning for Adults”. It is the ambitious aim of SteLLLa to develop a generic method for autonomous learning for adults that can be implemented in the training courses of various professions. First of all, we will share information and experiences. The expertise of each partner combined with the well balanced constitution of the group guarantees a synergic cooperation and a cultural enrichment. Starting from concrete eLearning tasks; trainers, learners and the partner institutions will create new good practice examples for several domains. Adult learners will be involved in the test settings. We will promote these new eLearning techniques to enhance the Life Long Learning opportunities for adults. Also, we want to stimulate trainers and learners to use an eLearning environment as a communication tool and for didactical purposes; to use modern ICT methods not only to communicate but also to acquire and exchange knowledge.
The FWC serves as the National Contact Point in the European network COST Action 219ter: Accessibility for All to Services and Terminals for Nex Generation Networks. The Action merges the new mobile technologies with a humanitarian angle, aspiring to the day in which new mobile technologies will be accessible and beneficial to all. Driving principle of the action is that the latest mobile systems will provide the opportunity for building a more inclusive telecommunications arena. The applicant has recently organized a European conference in Cyprus (http://cnti.org.cy/cost219) and is co-authoring a book chapter in a Cost219ter book publication.
I.S.O.L.A. Innovative Strategies and Opportunities for Less Favoured Regions http://www.isolaproject.org
The Future Worlds Center is an implementing partner of the project entitled: ‘Innovative Strategies and Opportunities for Less Favoured Areas’, with the lead agency being Cultural Association of ORIENTARE in Cagliari/ Italy. The main aims of the project are to involve Youth from Less Favoured Areas in Trainings and Actions that will strengthen their social skills, their qualifications for their professional careers, and that will help disseminate the values and objectives of the European Union. The Local Coordinator of the organisation attended a 5-day Training on the Youth Programme, Project development and management skills for working in multilateral teams in Cagliari/ Italy.
Building a Multi - Ethnic and Multi - National Cyprus to promote European Values and Regional and International Peace http://www.multiculturalcyprus.blogspot.com
The main objective of the project is to promote awareness and increase the sensitivity of the Cypriot society on how a multi-ethnic and multi-cultural Cyprus serves European values and promotes regional and international peace. To meet the main objective, the project will engage students, teachers and parents in workshops and activities to create a vision map for a multicultural and multiethnic Cyprus, as well as visualize and implement specific activities, which contribute towards materializing the vision for a multicultural
Strengthening Asylum for Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Cyprus
FWC (CNTI) is the implementing organization for UNHCR in Cyprus. The aim of the project is to ensure that asylum seekers have access to a fair and efficient asylum procedure and both asylum seekers and refugees enjoy their rights based on national, European and international law.
Talk of the Island http://www.talkoftheisland.org
Talk of the Island is the first bi-communal radio program on the island of Cyprus. It wants to promote a culture of peace and to display balanced news reporting by informing all island communities about local issues and events that are not typically covered by the current media. The show also provides a forum for open, island-wide dialogue and direct communication about on-going issues. Talk of the Island aspires to be instrumental in providing a vehicle for all Cypriots who share a vision for the future and that of a unified Cyprus. Talk of the island started broadcasting in October 2005. Two skilled producers working together, one from northern Cyprus and one from southern Cyprus implement the program. It is broadcasted weekly in both parts of Cyprus. Talk of the Island is also broadcasted online on our website.
Civil Society Dialogue http://www.quickwasp.net/civilsociety
The Civil Society Dialogue project will bring together civil society organizations from both sides of the island to share experiences and work to create a Citizen’s Platform where ideas are discussed and an Action Plan is devised to build the new reunited Cyprus. Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriots having years of bi-communal experience will come together with others who are not very experienced in that field but are young, well educated and motivated individuals to share experiences and ideas and generate their vision of the island..
EU Kids Online http://www.edukidsonline.net
The EU Kids Online project examines research carried out in 21 member states into how children and young people use the internet and new media. This three-year collaboration aims to identify comparable research findings across Europe to evaluate the social, cultural and regulatory influences affecting both risks and children’s and parents’ responses to them. It charts available data, notes indicative gaps and identifies factors that shape the research capability of European research institutions. Finally, it examines methodological issues relating to cross-cultural analyses and the study of children’s online experience in order to develop a best practice guide to research
The Hibernation Project is a research project focusing on new technology for learning. It investigates how animations can be used to support learning. More specifically, the project investigates if animations are more effective for specific types of learners than for others, e.g., students with reading difficulties, students who prefer the auditory vs. visual channel for learning. The project consists of three phases: Phase 1: Specification of the learning domain, the foundation of theoretical background, the design of the empirical study; Phase 2: Desig of animations with respect to design principles and empirical findings; and Phase 3: Data collection, data analysis, and interpretation.
The purpose of the project is to develop a screening test capable not only of predicting children at risk (e.g., possible dyslexics), but also equipping the teacher with a profile of mental abilities relevant for choosing and designing personalized remediation programs. Most innovative, the system is language independent, i.e., it relies on cognitive rather than language-based measures. The Mental Attributes Profiling System, MAPS battery, addresses eight major domains of language-independent and -dependent tests that have been frequently linked to reading development and/or disability: (1) short term visual memory (2) short term auditory memory (3) auditory and/or visual discrimination (4) letter-sound & sound-symbol correspondences (5) lateral awareness (6) categorization (7) sequential processing (8) navigational ability. Preliminary data were reported in various conferences.
New MediaLanscape Now http://www.cyprusmedia.wetpaint.com
The “New Media Landscape Now!” project aims to bring together journalists from both sides of divided Cyprus to produce a strong vision for an ideal media landscape which will hopefully serve as a magnet to mobilize transformation. The FWC organized a workshop with Cypriot journalists that will focus on the development of a road map towards an ideal media landscape in Cyprus. The FWC organized two follow-up, closed-door conferences with a total of 24 journalists - 12 from each side of the island. They worked together to finalize a vision of a future media landscape in Cyprus and to develop an action plan with steps towards a feasible transformation of the existing media landscape. They put together a set of guidelines sharing good practices and potential steps towards a new media world, to be disseminated among the main stakeholders related to media on both sides.
Accessibility for all to services and terminals for next generation mobile networks http://www.tiresias.org/cost219ter
The aim of the project is to ensure that asylum seekers have access to a fair and efficient asylum procedure and both asylum seekers and refugees enjoy their rights based on national, European and international law.
Resource - Adaptive Design of Visualizations for Supporting the Comprehension of Complex Dynamics in the Natural Sciences
The purpose of the project is 1. Interdisciplinary optimization of resources in learning from dynamic visualizations. 2. Development of instructional materials that meet high standards with regards to the scientific content domain, the computer technology, and the constraints of the cognitive system. 3. Development of innovative learning scenarios with dynamic visualizations (e.g., situated mobile learning). 4. Assembling a final product for complex and situated learning.
C.N.T.I. is operational since 1993. It has a Board of eight members that includes personalities known to the Cypriot public and an International Advisory Board of five distinguished scientists (Germany, USA). Four full-time, eight part-time, seven external Associates, and more than 30 volunteer scientists participate in the various projects. C.N.T.I. has been successful in securing funds for its research as well as peace and social intervention operations since its foundation in 1992.
NAME TITLE Dr. Yiannis Laouris President Elia Petridou Project Coordinator: HasNa Project Larry Fergeson Visiting Scientist, From Portland State University (6 months). Project Coordinator: Technology For Peace Kerstin Wittig Visiting Scientist, From Germany (6 months). Assistant Coordinator: Media Project. Tonia Loizidou Administrator Corina Drousiotou Legal Advisor Olivia Marangou Legal Advisor Maria Avraamidou Legal Advisor Vipar Uthenpong IT Expert Reinhard Eckert Project Coordinator Anna-Maria Drousiotou Project coordinator for CyberEthics, the Cyprus Safer Internet Awareness Node. Nikolas Kasparis Technical Director and Hotline Coordinator. Manos Mathioudakis social advisor for the project “Strengthening Asylum in Cyprus”. Loredana Mihalka design of the MAPS and the Hibernation projects. Tatjana Taraszow coordinator of the Civil Society Dialogue Project and a research team member of the Cypriot Safer Internet awareness node CyberEthics, the “EU Kids Online Project” “Hibernation” and “MAPS”
Part-time staff and external associates
NAME TITLE Danielle Alexis Cosgrove internship Anthony DeLeo volunteer Mary Olin Visiting Scientist (3 months) Matthew Pfeiffer Visiting Scientist (3 months) Agamemnonas Zachariades internship Dr. Harry Anastasiou Senior Research Scientist Prof. Peter Gerjets Visiting Research Professor Dr. Nikleia Eteokleous Research Associate in Mobile Learning Unit Prof. Gary Gumpert Visiting Professor of Communications Dr. Timotheos Papadopoullos Assistant Professor of Psychology Prof. Suzan Drucker Visiting Professor of Journalism/ Mass Media Studies Prof. Joseph Joseph Professor of the University of Cyprus Dr Philip Snyder Senior Research Associate and Consultant
Equipment and Offices
CNTI is housed in a two-floor office located very conveniently at the business center of Nicosia at Promitheos 5 Street, behind the Hotel Cleopatra, just off Stasicratous Street and 50 m from Makarios Avenue. Its premises are fully furnished with extra office spaces for visiting associates and part-time personnel. The office areas include two conference rooms, one study room with a small library and a small kitchenette and a restroom area. Besides the relevant experience and the physical resources, C.N.T.I. created since its inception an excellent network of partners and channels of communication both in Cyprus and abroad. For example in Cyprus, it has collaborated and received co-funding for many of its projects with the Ministry of Education and Culture, the Ministry of Commerce and Industry, the Development Bank, the Youth Board, the Cyprus Telecommunica-tion Authority, the Bank of Cyprus, the Research Promotion Foundation and many others. Probably the most important resource that CNTI has is the extensive network of committed, enthusiastic and well-educated peace builders and scientists from the two communities of Cyprus and overseas.